Synthesis Essay Help for AP English Language
What Is the Synthesis Essay?
Synthesis is the process in which you, as the writer, develop a thesis and, in the course of developing this thesis,
- you investigate a variety of sources, both print and visual;
- you choose which of these sources to include in your presentation;
- you respond to these sources and discuss how they relate to your position on the topic.
Note: A well-respected and experienced Advanced Placement English instructor, Jodi Rice, uses the following example to clarify the idea of synthesis: You're having a dinner party and consult two recipes you've been given and use bits of each to create your own, new dish. You let your dinner guests know you invented the dish, but that you used and combined recipes from your grandmother and from the newspaper. You don't take credit for those two recipes, but you do take credit for what you did with them.
A Few Comments Before Beginning
Your AP Language class, as well as other courses across the curriculum, have taught you how to conduct, evaluate, and present research. You most likely have completed at least one research paper that required you to develop a thesis on a particular subject; to find, read, and annotate outside sources related to the topic; to determine which of the sources to use in support of your thesis; to incorporate these sources into your research paper; and to appropriately cite your sources.
If you've written this type of paper before, whether brief or lengthy, you're well on your way to being able to compose a successful synthesis essay.
The synthesis essay also requires you to be familiar with both analysis and argument. Those skills needed to develop a successful essay of analysis or argument are requisites for composing a synthesis essay.
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